Last year, a bunch of my friends and I went to Cincinnati to see Rent. We decided we would go to one of the yummy restaurants found downtown before the show for a great meal. My friend, Becky, who works downtown, suggested Nada.
Nada is like a new age Mexican restaurant. Almost all of us ordered some form of tacos, but Carolyn got Butternut Squash soup in addition to her meal. I had never tried Butternut Squash soup, so I asked for a taste.
It was amazing. I had never tasted anything quite like it! It was sweet and thick, with a great depth of flavor. I asked the waiter for the recipe, so he brought out one of the chefs from the kitchen. Of course, they didn’t give me the FULL recipe, word for word, measurement by measurement, but they did give me some idea of what was in it.
The other day, I was looking on the Fresh Market website and stumbled across this recipe. It sounded pretty good, so I thought I’d give it a whirl.
It was pretty spectacular. The whole time it was cooking I kept smelling it and thinking, “I can’t wait for this to be done cooking!” It reminded me of a cross between potato soup…and something. I can’t quite figure out what. Regardless, if you are looking for a good Butternut Squash soup, try this one. It’s pretty darn tasty!
Butternut Squash & Cheddar Cheese Soup
(from “The Fresh Market” website)
4 tbsp butter
1 medium onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and diced
Optional: 1 carrot, peeled and diced
4 tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1.5 quarts chicken broth
1 cup half & half
1 cup shredded cheddar
Start by preparing your butternut squash. Then heat your butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Toss in the squash, onion, and celery. I had some grated carrot I had picked up from Dorothy Lane’s salad bar, so I tossed them in for a little extra sweetness. Let them cook for about 10 minutes until the squash starts to get soft.
Add the flour and nutmeg to the vegetables. Toss to combine. You are looking to make a roux here so your soup will get nice and thick. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring often.
Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook for at least 5 minutes. I let mine simmer for a bit longer to ensure the doneness of the squash.
Add the half & half and the cheese…
…and puree until smooth.
I used an emulsion blender, but you could use a regular blender as well. I suggest letting it cool a bit before handling it if you choose to go that way though.